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Thread: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs

  1. #1

    Default Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs

    My motorcycle runs a pair of H7 bulbs, one for low, one for high. I hate having to pull the entire bike apart just to get at the bulbs when one needs changing. I also think that HIDs are the most hideous thing to happen to motorcycles since the concept of over-under headlights.

    So I've begun looking into LEDs for the bike instead. I found drop in replacements for H7 bulbs:

    18 SMD
    http://www.amazon.com/Bulbs-White-18.../dp/B005GLL9NK

    68 SMD
    http://www.topsellings.com/en/car-h7...n&currency=USD

    And even 120 SMD on one bulb
    http://gb.suntekstore.com/H7-120__SM...Lamp-12V-.html


    A drop in solution is ideal, but looking at those lights and reading around the forums, I'm not sure that they would actually make good headlights. None of them list their lumens. I'm trying to match or beat Sylvania Silverstars, which I found to be rated at around 1350 lumens.

    Does anyone have any experience with these kind of bulbs, are they worth even trying out?

  2. #2
    Flashaholic* bshanahan14rulz's Avatar
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    Default Re: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs

    Unfortunately, LEDs do not present the optics with the same shape, size, and brightness of the original source, the little coil of wire that glows brightly. Those linked bulbs will be great if you are going to a bike show where the bike is on a stationary platform indoors, however they will not give you a useable headlamp, and definitely not a legal one at that. The LEDs don't put out the same amount of light as the original bulb, and even if they did, all that light wouldn't be coming from the same spot, so your reflector wouldn't focus the light like it should.

    This post is short and not very detailed, just trying to get to you before you pull the trigger on those. There are a few people here who can (and probably will) suggest what would work best in your situation while still staying legal and safe.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs

    "H7 LED bulbs" will not (do not, cannot) work. Ever. The problem is not with any particular implementation or design, the problem is with the concept. There is no such thing as a drop-in LED replacement for an incandescent bulb. And Sylvania Silverstars are a low target to match or beat; despite the advertising hype they produce less light than a regular H7 (not more, and the "whiter" claim is bogus, too). The ones you want are Osram 65w H7 bulbs, see here.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs

    Thank you for the input guys.

    Scheinwerfermann: I recognize that the Silverstars aren't the very highest level of bulbs to get (and now I know what to get for my car !), I just want at minimum a comparable light source, but with a longer life than just a few short months. I have to take entirely too much of the bike apart every time I change the bulbs, plus with their cost each time I change them...it makes sense to move to a different solution. Maybe if HIDs weren't so ugly? lol.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs

    HIDs aren't an option; "HID kits" in halogen-bulb headlamps or fog/auxiliary lamps (any kit, any lamp, any vehicle no matter whether it's a car, truck, motorcycle, etc.) do not work safely or effectively, which is why they are illegal. See here.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs

    I ran the Osram 65w H7 bulbs in my motorcycle for years; they were awesome.
    I also used PIAA 1100s to supplement the highbeams; they helped but weren't as awesome...

    I've also used and liked the Phillips Xtreme Power line of bulbs. I haven't used them in an H7 but they'd put the Slyvania product to shame for sure.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs

    Quote Originally Posted by Scheinwerfermann View Post
    HIDs aren't an option; "HID kits" in halogen-bulb headlamps or fog/auxiliary lamps (any kit, any lamp, any vehicle no matter whether it's a car, truck, motorcycle, etc.) do not work safely or effectively, which is why they are illegal. See here.
    Wow, this article is eye opening. HID kit = no for sure.

    I'll give the Osrams a try and see how they fare.

    Thank you all

  8. #8
    Flashaholic
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    Default Re: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs

    You may be able to make an interval estimate of the luminous flux with this
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luminous_efficacy

  9. #9

    Default Re: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs (HIDs?)

    I'm new here, & have been contemplating a similar question. I recently bought a 2004 Kia Optima, and want brighter light from the low beams. This car uses H7 bulbs in a projector, rather than a reflector setup. Somewhere I read that HID conversions were okay (more acceptable?) in projector systems than in reflectors. Is this true?

    I'm still not "sold" on the quality of most of the HID conversion kits I've seen. If I decide to stay with halogen lighting, it seems the Osram HYPER 65w is the way to go. Do I have that correct?

  10. #10

    Default Re: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs (HIDs?)

    Quote Originally Posted by dwmilton View Post
    I read that HID conversions were okay (more acceptable?) in projector systems than in reflectors. Is this true?
    No. Please read the article linked in post #5 of this thread.

    I'm still not "sold" on the quality of most of the HID conversion kits I've seen.
    That's true, most of them are of poor quality, but even a (hypothetical) good quality kit would not be safe, effective or legal. The problem is with the concept of an "HID kit", not with a lack of quality in any particular specific kit.

    If I decide to stay with halogen lighting, it seems the Osram HYPER 65w is the way to go. Do I have that correct?
    Yep!

  11. #11

    Default Re: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs

    Thank you sir, for the reply. I'll read that linked page ASAP. Looks like I'll be shopping for some Osram Hypers!

    I saw that Daniel Stern's site was down due to vacation, but I'll shop around. I look forward to reading more once his site is back up.

    I hate that I'm too "green" here to search...

  12. #12

    Default Re: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs

    Quote Originally Posted by dwmilton View Post
    Thank you sir, for the reply. I'll read that linked page ASAP. Looks like I'll be shopping for some Osram Hypers!
    (
    http://store.candlepower.com/osraulhiouh7.html

    If you call him "sir" too much you'll give him a swelled head...

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs

    Quote Originally Posted by Hilldweller View Post
    If you call him "sir" too much you'll give him a swelled head...
    LOL

    Bill

  14. #14

    Default Re: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs

    LOL

    I admit I get lazy, and was afraid of misspelling his name when typing late at night. Didn't want to chance calling him Smann...

  15. #15

    Default Re: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs

    A drop in solution is ideal, but looking at those lights and reading around the forums, I'm not sure that they would actually make good headlights. None of them list their lumens. I'm trying to match or beat Sylvania Silverstars, which I found to be rated at around 1350 lumens.

    Does anyone have any experience with these kind of bulbs, are they worth even trying out?[/QUOTE]

    All I can say is that I'm happy with mine, if that helps.
    Last edited by -Virgil-; 10-03-2012 at 08:26 AM.

  16. #16
    Flashaholic* Alaric Darconville's Avatar
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    Default Re: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs

    Quote Originally Posted by ahazbun View Post
    All I can say is that I'm happy with mine, if that helps.
    It doesn't help. The linked "bulbs" are illegal, and do not, cannot, and will not ever, be safe or effective. That you are happy with them demonstrates how easily the human optical system is tricked.
    Last edited by -Virgil-; 10-03-2012 at 08:26 AM.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Replacing H7 Bulbs with LEDs

    Quote Originally Posted by Alaric Darconville View Post
    It doesn't help. The linked "bulbs" are illegal, and do not, cannot, and will not ever, be safe or effective. That you are happy with them demonstrates how easily the human optical system is tricked.
    +1. "I'm happy with it" is meaningless at best.

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